The U.K. Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has awarded four businesses over 4 million British pounds to spur on innovation in lowering the costs of offshore wind energy.
The grants have been awarded to 2-B Energy, High Voltage Partial Discharge Ltd., SgurrControl Ltd. and Ocean Resource Ltd. as part of the DECC's innovation competition to support research and development into offshore wind power.
The department says winning projects will use the funding to streamline the design and installation of offshore wind turbines, which could lead to significant reductions in the cost of offshore wind. For example, the DECC claims the 2-B Energy project has the potential to bring down the cost of offshore wind by as much as 35%.
"The U.K. is already the world leader in offshore wind – with more deployed than any other country," says DECC Minister Greg Barker. "Innovation is critical to cutting the cost of this low-carbon power source, which could in turn, lead to lower bills for hardworking consumers. I wish the winners every success with their projects."
2-B Energy has been awarded approximately 2.8 million British pounds to develop a novel two-bladed turbine supported by a full truss steel foundation for offshore wind applications. High Voltage Partial Discharge Ltd. has been awarded 900,000 British pounds to develop and trial a new type of monitoring technology that will provide early warning of faults in HVDC cables and direct preventive maintenance to help improve operating efficiency. SgurrControl Ltd. has been awarded 667,000 British pounds to develop a control system that will reduce the stress placed on turbine blades. Ocean Resource Ltd. has been awarded about 216,400 British pounds to develop an offshore wind turbine that is assembled and commissioned on shore and towed fully assembled for site installation using tugs.